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Augustus Love Medal 2021 Irina M. Artemieva

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European Geosciences Union

Irina M. Artemieva

Irina M. Artemieva
Irina M. Artemieva

The 2021 Augustus Love Medal is awarded to Irina M. Artemieva for her outstanding research contributions to our understanding of the complex processes that control the evolution, thermal structure, stability, and dynamic topography of the continental lithosphere.

Irina Artemieva is awarded the EGU Augustus Love Medal for her many contributions to our understanding of the Earth’s continental lithosphere. One of her many contributions is the development of a very widely used model of the thermal and compositional structure of the lithosphere as a function of age and its relation to geophysical properties. Her multidisciplinary and innovative research integrates thermal models, gravity, seismic observations, laboratory experiments of rock and mineral properties, and mantle xenolith data to determine the properties of the lithosphere we live on. As such, her research excellence is recognized across many different Earth science disciplines, and these integrated models of the lithosphere helped reconcile the sometimes-conflicting views between geophysicists and geochemists.

In her very well-received 2001 work, Artemieva established innovative methods to illustrate the systematic changes in thickness and chemical composition of lithosphere with age. In a number of subsequent papers, she explored the long-term stability of the very old, ‘cratonic’ parts of the Earth’s continents and examined the dynamic topography of the lithosphere, with examples from Eastern Europe, South Africa, and Siberia. In her later work, she established the role of magmatic underplating in crustal evolution. Recently, Artemieva proposed a novel model for the formation and alteration of continental crust based on systematic patterns in global crustal thickness. Her 2011 sole-author research monograph “The Lithosphere: an Interdisciplinary Approach” illustrates the breadth of her skills, interest, and knowledge on the topic. This monograph is widely used in the academic community and remains the authoritative work on our current knowledge of the lithosphere. 

In addition to her outstanding and innovative research contributions, Artemieva has been active in developing a significant number of international projects and organized many successful PhD workshops and conferences. She also devoted a lot of her time to the benefit of the scientific community, including taking on a number of editorial roles, through membership on many advisory boards and councils, and more recently in her service as the president of EGU’s Geodynamics Division and an EGU Council member from 2013-2017. All these contributions make Irina Artemieva fully deserving of the 2021 Augustus Love Medal.